It's not just B.R Chopra's Naya Daur that will be re-released in the coloured version. Dev Anand has also started work on colouring his last black and white film Hum Dono that released in 1961. Say the evergreen actor, Hum Dono is a timeless classic. It is a recognized film and everybody knows about it. It is being coloured to recreate the magic.
Hum Dono which was one of Dev Anand's most successful films was also nominated in the Berlin Film Festival. It is the only film where Dev Anand plays a double role. Under his Navketan banner, Dev Anand along with Goldstone Media Ltd. has already started working on the colourization process. Goldstone Media Ltd. is a Hyderabad based company into the colorization business for the past 5-6 years.
The technicians behind this refurbished film claim that the coloured version of Hum Dono will be much superior to Mughal-e-Azam that was coloured in 2004 and Naya Daur which will be released soon. They are using enhanced technologies, reportedly the best in world today, to get optimum output. While the earlier films that were coloured only had around 16 to 32 colours in a frame, the technology used in Hum Dono will enable them to virtually align 65000 shades of colours in one single frame.
So confident are the makers that they will soon be giving out a demo to the media of a small portion of the film that they have already coloured by now. Dev Anand is equally positive and says, 'Goldstone technicians know what they are doing. So they will handle any problem whatsoever'.
Jagan Mohan, the CEO of Goldstone Media Ltd. speaks about why the chose to colour this particular film, what are the challenges they are facing and how will they enhance the cinematic experience of Hum Dono for the current generation audience.
How did the idea of colouring Hum Dono originate?
Technically, the technology we are using is unique and the best presently available. Till date whatever technology was used worldover, only 8-bit files were used which are limited to only 16 colours per frame. When one scans a black and white movie into an 8-bit file, there are only 16 scales of grey shade in an image. So one is restricted to use only 16 colours; maximum 32 colours with extraordinary arrangements.
For the first time in the world we are scanning image as a 16-bit data that is approximately equal to 48-bit grey shade file which consists of approximately 65,000 greyshades. So we can virtually align 65,000 shades of colours in one single frame. Thus after you see the movie, you won't believe that the film was black and white initially. You'll feel it was originally made in colour. In short, in comparison with the coloured Mughal-e-Azam and the upcoming B R Chopra's Naya Daur, Hum Dono will look way better since the software used is 4 generations ahead of the one used for both the movies.
Why did you choose Hum Dono over any other movie?
Firstly, Hum Dono is Dev (Anand) Saab's last black and white film. And this is the only film in which he has done a dual role. The film has all the required drama and more importantly Dev Saab is with two beautiful heroines - Nanda and Sadhana, so we can promote it like a brand new film. When we were looking for a film, we thought this was the ideal movie to introduce the new technology with.
Did Dev Anand have any hand in influencing you to take up this film or is it entirely your choice?
The decision was solely at our discretion. We had many opportunities as we spoke to many people. But we decided to finally announce this project with a demo. We also have lined up other movies but as of now we want to concentrate on Hum Dono.
Did the coloured version of Mugal-E-Azam (that released in 2004) inspire you to colour Hum Dono?
Not really. We have been providing service to the U.S. companies. Moreover, this technology is new and the best around and whatever is best is more costly. So we never focused on Indian films because here budget is always a major issue of concern. Finally, we decided to enter the scene as Navketan was insisting us to work on an Indian film.